IPL 2023, GT vs KKR | Who said what ft. Rinku Singh, Rashid Khan
Rinku Singh was over the moon after completing the heist against GT.|
No matter the format, one of the most unbelievable heists in cricket’s history took place in Ahmedabad on Sunday. Rinku Singh was the architect of it, as he smashed five consecutive sixes to help KKR get the job done against GT when they required 29 off the last over in Match 13 of IPL 2023.
Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) scripted one of the most memorable triumphs in the history of the Indian Premier League (IPL) on Sunday by beating defending champions Gujarat Titans (GT) by three wickets in Ahmedabad’s Narendra Modi Stadium. Chasing a mammoth 204, the Purple and Gold Brigade required 38 off the last eight balls, and unsurprisingly, almost everyone anticipated they were moments away from a defeat.
But Rinku Singh had other ideas in mind and led them to experience an edge-of-the-seat entertainer. The scores of his last seven deliveries read 6, 4, 6, 6, 6, 6, and 6, predominantly against Yash Dayal, which eventually helped his side to see off the target in perhaps the most unreal way.
Speaking at the post-match presentation, Rashid Khan, the interim Titans skipper in Hardik Pandya's absence, admitted the Rinku mania was pure entertainment for everyone, and lauded the southpaw for keeping cool in a pressure situation. Not to forget, Rashid turned the tide for GT out of nowhere in the 17th over by doing a hat-trick -- his first in the competition -- until Rinku's carnage stole the show.
"That is what T20 is all about, it is about entertainment. Same things happened with us last year when we were on the winning side. A good game of cricket and hopefully the fans would have liked it. (Message in the final over) It was more about bowling the ball that he was comfortable with. Rinku played some unbelievable shots. He tried his best deliveries but it did not work. Credit goes to the batter the way he finished."
Along with Rinku, Venkatesh Iyer staged a scintillating show as well, scoring 83 off just 40 balls with eight fours and five sixes. His valiant knock was clinical for the successful run-chase and his return to good-old form allowed KKR support staff and fans to breathe a sigh of relief.
"It was a nail-biting finish and extremely happy with the way we won. Our coach has maintained that we can score 200 from any position. Tonight was another example that we will never give up as a team. The wicket was quite good to bat and I was just trying to execute my plans. When the target is 200, you cannot have silent overs. Me and Nitish had a nice partnership and that set the tone. We lost wickets then but thankfully Lord Rinku saved the day."
KKR's stand-in captain Nitish Rana, who made 45 off 29 balls in this epic run chase, was in full praise of Rinku to pull off a once-in-a-lifetime show.
"...This result, though, is only down to Rinku and his brilliance. People asked me why Rinku does not play a bigger role. If this is his secondary role, then imagine what he can do in a primary role. I do not have words to describe Rinku's innings."
Even after blasting Yash Dayal one after another, Rinku, the man of the moment, was so humble while speaking to the broadcasters at the post-match presentation. He credited Rana's backing and belief in him, and Umesh Yadav's suggestion from the other end for his cameo.
"I had belief that I can do this. Rana bhai said to keep belief and to bat till the end, then we will see what happens. (On the single) I was just trying to hit sixes. (Umesh) Bhaiya was asking me not to think much and just play the ball. I was not thinking a lot, was just reacting to the ball. It kept coming out of the middle, I had belief and it came off in the end."